Facebook Live Teacher Q&A

Facebook Live Teacher Q&A

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Ever wonder what it is like to teach at The Esther School? On Tuesday, February 27, at 12:30 EST, we will have a Facebook Live Event to do just that! A live panel of current teachers will answer questions at The Esther School.

How to Watch:

  1. At 12:30 EST, go to facebook.com/theestherschool
    • Whether you’re watching in a group or individually, be sure to join on your own personal device so you can comment and we can see who’s watching.
  2. Open the live video found at the top of our home page.
  3. Comment on the video with who you are and where you are joining from – we want to say hi to you!
  4. Throughout the video, comment any questions you have about teaching at The Esther School.

Whether you’re an education student, a current teacher, or just want to learn more about The Esther School, we want to see you there! Please share the invite with friends and family members who may be interested.

 We’re excited to see you all there!

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Dental Clinic

Dental Clinic

 
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The Esther School aims to provide an education that develops students’ passions and skills to serve God’s Kingdom. And we do this by partnering with many people - teachers, administrators, parents, community members, and people from other countries around the world. It takes a village and a global community! We always look for new opportunity to involve people in a new way and fulfill a need at our school. When one comes up, we jump at the chance!

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Dr. Jim and Chris Hoekwater are dentists from Michigan and have run dental clinics in other parts of the world. They have also been supporters and sponsors of The Esther School. They found a chance to serve The Esther School and the surrounding area and help fulfill a need in the community.

The dentist gave students mirrors to follow along as he worked.

The dentist gave students mirrors to follow along as he worked.

Many families of The Esther School and the surrounding community do not have the opportunity to get proper dental health care. Often the cost and distance are too difficult, meaning it may never happen. The Hoekwaters partnered with Chifundo Rural Health Center, a local clinic, to bring a dental clinic to this rural part of Zambia. Together with Twaambo, a dentist in the district, they provided an opportunity for free and reachable dental care.

For the third year, we have brought students to the dental clinic. This year, grade two students came to have their teeth looked at, cleaned, and protected from future problems. For the majority of the students, this was their first time at the dentist ever!

Some were excited to visit the dentist and some were nervous. But when students sat in the dentist chair, the Hoekwaters and Chifundo staff made everyone feel comfortable. The dentists taught them what they were doing and the importance of good oral hygiene. We are excited about this continual partnership and how it keeps our students healthy!

It’s incredible to give our students the chance to take care of their physical needs by giving them healthy smiles. It’s even more significant to give them the chance to see Christ-followers being generous with their gifts and talents to make an impact on His Kingdom. The Hoekwaters are a great example to The Esther School’s students!

After their check up, everyone received a new toothbrush.

After their check up, everyone received a new toothbrush.

We smile when we think about the opportunity this is for our students!

Thank you, Dr. Jim and Chris Hoekwater and the Chifundo Rural Health Center!

 

URGENT update: House Fire

URGENT update: House Fire

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Last night, one of the staff duplex units, House of Malachi, caught fire and burned.

Around 4:00 in the morning, a teacher in the neighboring house woke suddenly and smelled smoke. She called the Site Manager to alert him that a brush fire might be getting close. When he went to investigate, he saw a fire through the window of Malachi.

No one was hurt. The staff who live in the house had not yet arrived and the two living on the other side of the duplex were evacuated quickly.  We thank God for His protection and quick wisdom for those involved.

The fire began from a propane leak in the kitchen. It spread from the fridge to the rest of the house. The local fire department was called and arrived shortly after. Together with our guards and Site Manager, they worked hard to contain the fire to one side. While they triumphed in this, all the possessions inside Malachi were lost; the opposite side suffered some smoke and water damage.

While we are shocked and saddened by the events of last night, we are not shaken. Our Cornerstone will not crumble. What the enemy intends for harm, God can turn for good. We are so thankful for the way He has already showed up. His protection was visible in promptings, quick actions, and clear thinking. Thank God for His provision.

Join us in praying for those immediately affected; that as they process, God grants comfort in their soul and reassurance that He is with them in the midst of it all.

Our physical loss is only material, but two missionary families have lost their home. We will keep you updated as we assess the structural damage, but it is likely we will need to rebuild the duplex.

Join us in taking back what the enemy has stolen. Help us rebuild and restore this home. We have immediate needs as we prepare for the returning staff, and future needs as we rebuild.

“In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” -John 16:33

 
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Join Our Staff!

Join Our Staff!

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We have new job postings! Join our staff in Zambia. We're looking for passionate individuals who are ready to share their gifts to help raise servant leaders for the Kingdom.

Available Positions:

Fill out an application and email to Jill Postma, Executive Director, at info@estherschool.org.

Important School Update

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Due to an increasing presence of cholera in the capital city, Lusaka, the government of Zambia made the decision to close schools for the month of January. This is in an attempt to contain the spread of the disease. In compliance with this decision, The Esther School will be closed through January.

Please pray protection over our students, their families, and the community. Pray for those affected and impacted by this outbreak. Pray for wisdom and resources needed for the authorities in charge of containing the disease and activating the response. And pray for the widespread healing that only God can bring.

Thank you for continuing to lift The Esther School and Zambia up in your prayers!

Newman's Own Foundation Holiday Challenge Fundraiser

Newman's Own Foundation Holiday Challenge Fundraiser

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The Newman's Own Foundation $500k Holiday Challenge is going on now through December 31! We are excited about this opportunity to share what God is doing at The Esther School and to invite others to join us. 

One way YOU can help is by setting up your own fundraising page.

Setting up a personal fundraising page is a great way to engage the people you know. Once set up, share with your friends, family, and co-workers. This could be the first introduction to The Esther School for someone with a heart for the mission! They will then be able to give directly through your fundraiser. Through YOU, more can hear about The Esther School, and more can make an impact on the students!

How to set up a fundraising page:

  1. Go to The Esther School's donation page
  2.  Click "Join the Team & Create Your Own Fundraiser" to begin setting up your own page

OR

  1. Email rachel.vs@estherschool.org to have the page set up for you or if you have any questions

Once your page is made, invite others to give through it! You'll be able to see how many people have connected to The Esther School through you!

Sharing your fundraising page:

  • E-mail - Reach your friends and family through email. Share about The Esther School and invite them to give to your fundraiser!
  • Social Media - Share about your fundraiser through your favorite social media site and invite your followers to join in!
    • Links to Facebook and Twitter on your fundraising page
  • Face-to-Face - Share your involvement with The Esther School as you see people. You never know who the Lord is preparing to join!

YOU can empower children to serve their communities, families, and the Kingdom with their passions and skills!

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End of Year Challenge

End of Year Challenge

The Esther School has an exciting opportunity to participate in The Newman’s Own Foundation $500k Holiday Challenge! This is a friendly competition for non-profits to compete for weekly and grand prizes throughout December. Newman's Own is giving out $500,000 in total prizes! 

While the prizes are nice, what we're really excited about is the chance to share what God is doing at The Esther School on a larger platform! 

From now until December 31, help us grow The Esther School community! 

Through this contest, you have the capability of creating your own fundraising page! By inviting your friends, family, and coworkers to join the contest through donations and fundraisers, you're helping more people hear about what God is doing at The Esther School, which in turn invites more people to make an impact! Check out these ways you can help:

Set Up a Fundraiser:

  1. Set up your own fundraising page by clicking here or emailing rachel.vs@estherschool.org
    • Once you've made your page, invite your friends to join you by giving to your fundraiser!

Make a Donation:

  1. Go to The Esther School contest page
  2. Click "Donate Now"
  3. Fill out donation information
  4. Fill out payment information and click "Donate"

Share:

  1. Share this post with your friends, family, and coworkers!
  2. Follows us on social media to stay up-to-date on the contest

Join us and help raise awareness of what God is doing at

The Esther School!

 

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A Big #GivingTuesday THANK YOU!

A Big #GivingTuesday THANK YOU!

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THANK YOU!!

Wow. You never stop amazing us with your generosity! This #GivingTuesday, YOU raised over $16,000!

AND you helped us finish Phase Three of Raise (them) UP! Through your giving, you're providing a school where children can learn, feel safe, and grow for years to come.

Thank you for helping us make The Esther School strong and safe!

#GivingTuesday 2017

#GivingTuesday 2017

 

#GivingTuesday is November 28th - one week away! Our goal is to raise $15,000 to complete Raise (them) UP and fund additional needed projects for The Esther School. Your gift will provide needed updates to our solar power and safety needs. Your generosity prepares us for the future and keeps us strong as we grow!

Be sure to watch the video above to learn more!

How to Give:

  1. Go to www.estherschool.org/donate or the “Donate Today” button below
  2. Click on “Make a Donation” for a US donation or “Make a Canadian Donation” for a donation made in Canada
  3. Complete the form and put “#GivingTuesday” in the comment box
  4. Press submit. Thanks for making an impact!
 
 

Share with others and give anytime now through November 28 to help raise them up this #GivingTuesday!

One Month Until #GivingTuesday

One Month Until #GivingTuesday

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Tuesday, November 28 is #GivingTuesday! People all over the world use this day to prioritize giving and make a lasting impact in the holiday season. “As a global movement, #GivingTuesday unites countries around the world by sharing our capacity to care for and empower one another.” Last year, you made a lasting impact on The Esther School!

 

Last year, our #GivingTuesday goal focused on Raise (them) UP Phase Two: New Housing for our growing staff. We set our goal at $4,000. Through two matching donors and your astounding generosity, you raised over $33,000! You blew us away with your response, and YOU made it possible to begin construction.

 

The project you started through #GivingTuesday is complete!

The project you started through #GivingTuesday is complete!

We’re about a month away from this year’s #GivingTuesday and we can’t wait to see what God is going to do through you this year. Look out for an update NEXT WEEK to find out this year’s #GivingTuesday goal!

See last year’s #GivingTuesday results!

 

Thank you to everyone who helped make last year's #GivingTuesday a success!

Happy Independence Day, Zambia!

Happy Independence Day, Zambia!

Tomorrow, October 24, is Zambia’s Independence Day! Today, as a school we celebrated the hard work of so many for freedom. Students performed songs, skits, dances, and poems for their families to reflect on the importance of tomorrow. We thank God for what He is doing in this country and pray that it always looks to Him!

Enjoy these pictures of the day!

Happy 53 years of independence, Zambia!

5 Year Birthday Celebration and Fundraising Event

5 Year Birthday Celebration and Fundraising Event

On October 11, friends in Acton, Ontario hosted a Five Year Birthday Celebration and Fundraising Event. The night held a performance from The African Children’s Choir and an opportunity to share about The Esther School. Attendees had the chance to walk through an Esther School time-line, enjoy some dessert, and be invited to join in our future story.

That night $10,000 CAD ($7,500 USD) was raised for the final phase of Raise (them) UP!

Thank you to everyone who organized, showed up, and participated in the event. Thank you for helping us raise them up!

Enjoy some photos from the evening!

Photo Credit: Cindy Bultema

5-Year Birthday Party

5-Year Birthday Party

On September 27th, we celebrated our FIFTH birthday at The Esther School! Students, teachers, and staff came together in one room to enjoy the day. The time was filled with songs, skits, and poems to commemorate the last five years and concluded with a slice of cake.

Enjoy some pictures of the celebration. Thanks for celebrating with us where ever you are!

Then and Now

Then and Now

The Esther School opened its doors for the first time five years ago. God has provided in so many ways ever since the beginning! It’s amazing to see the growth of the students, campus, and community. 

Thank you for being a part of The Esther School! Here are some “then and now” pictures for you to enjoy.

Raise (them) UP and 5 Year Celebration Dinner!

Raise (them) UP and 5 Year Celebration Dinner!

Thank you to all who joined us last night in celebrating 5 years of ministry! We loved having dinner with you and sharing stories of God's faithfulness!

Thank you also for your generosity last night. We're thrilled to announce that you raised over $21,000 towards the Raise (them) UP campaign and where needed most! Thank you for helping us raise up the campus so we can continue to reach the children of Nyangwena!

 
 

If you missed the dinner but still want to be a part of Raise (them) UP, you can donate below:

 

 

 

Lead2Feed

Lead2Feed

Our mission is to raise servant leaders for the Kingdom. So we’re excited when we hear stories of students stepping into servant leadership around the world! Take a class of students from Grand Rapids Christian Middle School (GRCMS). The 8th grade Global Diversity Class wanted to learn about the world and help it too. So they entered, Lead2Feed, in the hopes of raising money for their nonprofit of choice. Hear what the teacher has to say:

Lead2Feed is a student leadership competition that our school has participated in for the past few years.  Students work in teams to research a non-profit organization, learn how that organization is impacting a community, work on communicating that information in a short "elevator" speech, and then show leadership by putting on some kind of fundraising event to raise support for that organization. 
My students choose to raise support for The Esther School (TES) and Bethany Christian Services Refugee Relocation Services - because of our friendship with our TES sponsor child and our study of the world refugee crisis.  The student teams then work on branding themselves and creating a logo.  In the past each team has put on their own fundraising events, but this year, we joined forces with the 7th grade class and put on one big event, a fundraising dinner where we shared stories about The Esther School and Bethany Christian Services (refugee relocation services) and the MIRA Foundation (the 7th grade's organization). 
Then we created a video, wrote a few reflections, filled out the lengthy contest entry and sent it in. Several weeks later we learned that we won one of the 2nd place awards:  $10,000 to be shared with our three organizations and a $5,000 technology grant for our school.  SO COOL!

Thank you GRCMS Global Leadership Class for your servant leadership and making a Kingdom impact!

 

Nyangwena Soccer Academy

Nyangwena Soccer Academy

Where some people see a dusty soccer pitch, others see opportunity.

Grade three teacher, Weston Kabaghe, did at least. Through teaching and living in Nyangwena for the past two years, Weston realized the many challenges the youth of the village face. He saw them dropping out of school and falling into trouble when they were idle. Weston felt a desire to reach the youth and began thinking of how he could do it.

Weston noticed that many youth played soccer after school but the two teams in existence lacked leadership, organization, and good sportsmanship. Being a seasoned soccer player, Weston, along with a few teachers from the local school, saw an opportunity. 

“We wanted to make a program that would invest in the youths and help them find their talents. We wanted to bring back hope to the youth in the village,” said Kabaghe.

So in January, they began the “Nyangwena Soccer Academy.” Weston and the coaches were very clear about teaching a new way of soccer. They were going to focus on teamwork, sportsmanship, and discipline on the pitch.

“When we began, there were two teams in Nyangwena,” commented Kabaghe, “The teams refused to play together and would tease the younger children who came to play. We realized that we are not just coaching soccer, but coaching a person.”

The academy practices five times a week and play matches against local teams on the weekend. Everyday after knocking off from The Esther School, Weston meets the players and other coaches on the pitch for practice. And in the few short months of coming together, the impact is obvious.

Where they was once fighting, players are now working together and encouraging their teammates. The high standard of sportsmanship causes them to be noticed by their opponents, and contributed to their amazing record – only one loss!

One day, Weston hopes to make it a traveling team and to connect it with an organization that uses soccer to share the Gospel. He wants to open the academy up to other teams through soccer clinics or host a tournament. But for now, Weston is thankful.

“We are so proud of the youths. We thank God that He gave us this idea to reach the youth. There are so many good things coming out of this that I didn’t expect. The community is seeing that good things can happen when we come together.”

Weston also formed the Nyangwena Youth Organization in order to provide other ways for youth to get involved, such as singing and acting.

Popcorn into Markers

Popcorn into Markers

One grade two class at Dutton Christian in Michigan understands the importance of dry erase markers at school. They use them everyday! So when they heard that their pen pal class at The Esther School also used dry erase markers, they wanted to help. Getting dry erase markers to The Esther School can be difficult and costly, so these grade two students started brainstorming on how they could help.

The class came up with the idea to raise money for markers through a popcorn fundraiser. For one day, they would sell popcorn to the rest of the elementary classes. The students did the math and set a goal for selling 200 bags of popcorn, which could buy 64 dry erase markers. With the goal set and word out, the students got ready to serve.

What happened next blew them away! They sold 400 bags of popcorn and ran out! Some of the grade two students gave up their order so others could have it. In the end, they raised $200 and purchased 350 markers for their friends at The Esther School.

We love hearing stories of children around the world grabbing hold of the mission of The Esther School and making it their own. They are excited about the role they play in the Kingdom and unafraid to step in faith. Thank you Dutton Christian second grade class for your servant's heart and for sharing your love and joy!

"It felt like we were giving love to the school buy turning popcorn into dry erase markers."  -Dutton Christian grade two student

Sorrow May Last the Night...

Sorrow May Last the Night...

We love to share with you the joy of The Esther School. Students learning, getting to know Jesus, overcoming obstacles. But in reality, some things are hard.
 
Behind the shining smiles and blue uniforms are children coming from hard places. Poverty isn’t just a word to them - it’s a reality. That means many of them face the worry of not enough food or clean water. It means families are left broken by death.
 
Today we received news of the death of a student's mother. She was the fourth parent to pass away this semester. Eight of our students and their siblings are left without a mother or father by these deaths.

Poverty creates barriers to accessing even the most basic of health care, and because of this inaccessibility, sickness and disease takes lives too young and too often. And this community feels that fact first hand.
 
We don’t share this with you to discourage. Easter reminds us “Death has been swallowed up in victory” (Isaiah 25:8). We may live in a dark and broken world but Jesus gave us light through hope and victory.
 
He also gave us each other.

“In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare. Pray hard and long. Pray for your brothers and sisters. Keep your eyes open. Keep each other's spirits up so that no one falls behind or drops out.”
(Ephesians 6:18 MSG)

We’re thankful that Jesus allows us to stand by these children in their loss and we invite you to stand with us in prayer. Nothing is more effective than bringing the plight of these children before the Lord in prayer.
 
Poverty is hard but it doesn’t have the final say. These children face harsh realities, but every day we get to offer the hope and joy of Jesus that covers all brokenness.

It's because of Jesus that we can say "Weeping may stay for the night but rejoicing comes in the morning" (Psalm 30:5)